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Energy

Expert opinion prepared by Dr. Amit Mor and Shimon Saroussi, Eco Energy, Inc.

Past developments: Israel was dependent on fuel imports and suffered the consequences of being an “electricity island” disconnected from international networks. Coal was selected as strategic source for energy production, and measures were taken to reduce environmental consequences in accordance with accepted practices at the time; the production, transmission, and distribution of electricity are carried out by a government company (the electricity company), whose goal is ensuring the reliable supply of electricity.

 

Current trends: The inclusion of natural gas in the energy market paves the way for private electricity producers, constitutes a substantive structural change for Israel, and reduces dependence on fuel imports; to date, the scope of renewable energy development has been very limited; a significant reduction in air pollution from the burning of fuel for energy production has been achieved, but it is still unclear how Israel will meet its obligations to reduce greenhouse gasses.

 

“Business as usual” scenario: The price of oil is not expected to decline, yet the price of natural gas is expected to rise. Within a decade natural gas will provide 70% of the market’s needs for electricity production and for large industries’ energy supply. Measures will be taken to ensure a variety of natural gas sources. Despite greater energy efficiency, there will be an increase in energy consumption by 64% compared to 2009. The scope of renewable energy production will reach 10%. Given that Israel will remain an “electricity island” and that the electricity network lacks redundancy, it will be necessary to back up energy sources with diesel and fuel oil.

 

Recommendations for the future:

 

Scenarios under which energy sources will increase:

  1. Maintenance of a long-term reserve of natural gas for Israel by limiting its export;

  2. Import of liquid natural gas (LNG), its storage, and construction of a re-gasification facility at sea (stationary or mobile container);

  3. Increasing the scope of electricity production from renewable energy sources to 20% of the total of electricity production by allocating approximately 300 square kilometers in the Negev desert for solar facilities;

  4. Construction of nuclear power plants at a capacity of approximately 4 GW.

 

Scenarios under which energy efficiency will increase:

 

  1. Construction of a smart bi-directional electricity network to accommodate heavy demands, including electric motor vehicles;

  2. Use of natural gas for transportation (CNG, methanol);

  3. Use of local fuel derived from oil shale for transportation and industry;

  4. Adoption of measures to increase energy efficiency by 20%.

 

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